Wind Energy

Fix the setback to end a setback: editorial

AKRON — “Three years ago, Ohio erected a roadblock to the development of wind power in the state. It all but halted new investment. Now the pieces have aligned at the Statehouse to make the needed correction. The Republican majority in the Senate has included a remedy in its version of the two-year state budget.

The smart thing for the conference committee seeking to bridge differences between the House and Senate plans would be to keep the wind fix in the final budget sent to the governor for his signature by the end of the week.

What happened in 2014 to derail wind power? A little legislative mischief-making by state Senate leaders in the form of a provision dropped into a mid-biennium budget bill that expanded the setback requirement for wind turbines. The minimum distance from the nearest property line went from 550 feet to 1,300 feet.

The change made it more difficult to deploy the necessary number of turbines to make a wind farm work, Ohio now with one of the most restrictive requirements in the region and the country. The result is, investors pulled back, even putting at risk projects already approved by the state Power Siting Board.”

— editorial, Akron Beacon Journal

link to editorial

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